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Belkin Debuts New Compact 'Dual Power' Thunderbolt 3 Dock Core

BeatCrazy

macrumors 68020
Jul 20, 2011
2,469
1,178
Cable is far too short. I don't want to be that attacked to my dock or have it that front and center on my desk.

Ok. Cool. So?

So you can’t have a longer than about a 0.5M “tether” cable like you were wanting (to hide the dock), else the ports on the dock would have terrible performance leading to a headache for Belkin’s customer service.
 
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4jasontv

macrumors 68040
Jul 31, 2011
3,422
3,540
So you can’t have a longer than about a 0.5M “tether” cable like you were wanting (to hide the dock), else the ports on the dock would have terrible performance leading to a headache for Belkin’s customer service.
The included tethered cable is 0.15 m long. They had some wiggle room regarding length.
 
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canonical

macrumors regular
Oct 17, 2014
100
168
The Caldigit TS3Plus (2m) comes with a removable 2m cable, apparently Certified: 40Gb/s, up to 100W.
 
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nickmilitello

macrumors newbie
Feb 26, 2011
18
4
I just want a decent dock that supports the 16" MacBook Pro. Seems like most are under powered or for the older 15" models.
I agree. It is ridiculous that there isn't a single TB3 hub out there that can handle the 96w requirement for the new 16". I have tested about 5 of them and ALL drain the battery if you are doing any type of heavy lifting... I have emailed a few of the companies and they literally have said they have no plans to up the wattage from 87 to 96...
 
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Gasu E.

macrumors 601
Mar 20, 2004
4,634
2,663
Not far from Boston, MA.
It’s royalty-free, but Intel are still in charge of optional device certification, and I believe you still need to source controller chips from them. USB4 won’t have that limitation hopefully. Whatever happens, I’m close to certain you’ll be able to plug Thunderbolt 3 devices into Apple Silicon Macs and get the same features and performance.


Since Apple both helped Intel develop Thunderbolt, and, pointedly, made a commitment to it up-front; of course Apple worked out a deal in advance as to what would happen if Apple moved away from Intel CPUs. That's the kind of contingency every corporation writes into a contract, especially have you have leverage. The fact that Intel just went royalty free may have been triggered by that agreement. We can be highly confident that Apple has to right to design Thunderbolt into its proprietary chip set.
 
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torontotim

macrumors member
Jul 29, 2019
53
118
Shame all these small dock designers insist on putting a pigtail USB cable permanently mounted. I'd just as soon have a USB C port and be forced to buy a cable to connect it or pay $5 more and have it packaged with a 3 foot cable.

I have a similar dock and had to buy a USB extension cable (trial-and-error to get one that worked) so I could locate the dock where I wanted.
 
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Anarchy99

macrumors 6502a
Dec 13, 2003
988
999
CA
They won't since thunderbolt was made with Intel, but they will probably just use usb4 which will be compatible with thunderbolt, I guess?
Thunderbolt 3 no longer has licensing fee's its why we are seeing a glut of random Chineseium Thunderbolt devices, or how you can find "Thunderbolt-compatible" USB-C cards for AMD systems they just can't use the Thunderbolt™ branding.

but even if that wasn't the case as you point out usb4 incorporates thunderbolt compatibility so while they might not in the 1st generation of hardware its a near impossibility Thunderbolt wont make it to Apple Silicon Macs.
 
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usamaah

macrumors regular
Sep 23, 2008
188
286
Chicago
There must be some Thunderbolt 3 limitation that only allows for short cables. Will be glad when USB 4.0 replaces it.
I bought a 6ft Thunderbolt 3 cable and it performs well. It connects my eGPU to a Thunderbolt 3 dock (Caldigit), which then connects via TB3 to my MBP.
 

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fairuz

macrumors 68020
Aug 27, 2017
2,486
2,589
Silicon Valley
There must be some Thunderbolt 3 limitation that only allows for short cables. Will be glad when USB 4.0 replaces it.
There are a lot of things that USB 4.0 will fix, and I consider these solutions all half-baked until then. I'm super glad I skipped this entire fiasco and stuck with the 2015 MBP.

Experienced first-hand the compatibility drama with the company laptop, but they pay for all the dongles, so whatever. Nearly wasted 180 of their $ on a hub until I noticed it uses DisplayLink, which is asking for problems. This **** should just work.
 
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dmccloud

macrumors 65816
Sep 7, 2009
1,436
335
Anchorage, AK
I could be wrong, but I believe Thunderbolt is developed by intel (with some help from Apple) so the tech belongs to intel. In the past Intel use to charge a premium for chipsets that included thunderbolt (in other words you were paying a royalty to sell it if it was on your computer). You are correct, that they removed the royalty, and all sellers can included thunderbolt without paying extra to use it. That does not mean AMD or any other company can just copy the design and sell their version of thunderbolt, It Just means you still buy your processor from intel and you can implement thunderbolt at no extra charge. Now does intel sell a small controller chip that includes thunderbolt, and would Apple want to use/buy it? Your guess is as good as mine but I agree with data0s, that it's unlikely. Why would Apple want to keep themselves tied or held hostage by intel. USB4 will be just as fast so what's the benefit to Apple.

The first paragraph in that article indicates that purchasing an Intel-based processor doesn't even factor into who can use Thunderbolt 3 technology:

"Today, Intel announced that it contributed the Intel Thunderbolt protocol specification to the USB Promoter Group, enabling other chip makers to build Thunderbolt compatible silicon, royalty-free."

Without this caveat, Apple wouldn't have been able to incorporate Thunderbolt 3 capabilities into the iPad Pro, as those devices do not use Intel chips. Once the spec was contributed/given to the USB Promoter Group, it essentially became an open-source technology.
 
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Stephen.R

macrumors 68030
Nov 2, 2018
2,700
3,106
Thailand
There must be some Thunderbolt 3 limitation that only allows for short cables. Will be glad when USB 4.0 replaces it.
The USB-IF has shown us that they are in a perpetual state of "hold my beer" when it comes to protocols trying to out-WTF each other.

The confusing part will be in how the devices operate specifically. USB4 can carry a PCIe or DisplayPort via tunnels (i.e. simultaneously) but can also operate in Alternate Mode, to carry a dedicated signal (i.e. the way USB-C ports can carry alt-mode signals, such as TB3, DisplayPort, HDMI, etc). Additionally, some of that support (PCIe, various alternate modes, and 40Gbps 'native' USB) are all optional for host-side ports.

I can't find specific documentation to identify if TB3 can be tunneled specifically (i.e. allowing a USB4 host port to supply a dock/hub type device with a TB3 tunneled connection plus e.g. another tunneled connection (e.g. DisplayPort, or regular USB3.2 traffic, or PCIe)..


I expect Apple will support as much of the spec as possible if they use USB4. TB3 is not restricted now (otherwise how do you expect they'd be able to have TB3 support in USB4??) and it's not immediately clear that USB4 adds much that TB3 doesn't already do, except another layer of tunneling and encapsulation and of course confusion.
 
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FaustsHausUK

macrumors 6502
Mar 11, 2010
382
502
Chicago, IL
Since Apple both helped Intel develop Thunderbolt, and, pointedly, made a commitment to it up-front; of course Apple worked out a deal in advance as to what would happen if Apple moved away from Intel CPUs. That's the kind of contingency every corporation writes into a contract, especially have you have leverage. The fact that Intel just went royalty free may have been triggered by that agreement. We can be highly confident that Apple has to right to design Thunderbolt into its proprietary chip set.

Crossing everything that's true, I've been spoiled with Thunderbolt 3 speeds. ☺️
 
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joevt

macrumors 68020
Jun 21, 2012
2,094
935
Without this caveat, Apple wouldn't have been able to incorporate Thunderbolt 3 capabilities into the iPad Pro, as those devices do not use Intel chips. Once the spec was contributed/given to the USB Promoter Group, it essentially became an open-source technology.
iPad Pro has no Thunderbolt 3 capabilities. The Thunderbolt 3 controller does not require Intel CPU - the only requirement is PCIe. The rest is just software.

I can't find specific documentation to identify if TB3 can be tunneled specifically (i.e. allowing a USB4 host port to supply a dock/hub type device with a TB3 tunneled connection plus e.g. another tunneled connection (e.g. DisplayPort, or regular USB3.2 traffic, or PCIe)..
The USB4 spec (Section 13) has all the info about Thunderbolt compatibility. It is optional for USB4 hosts but not for USB4 docks (UFP and DFP) or hubs (DFP). (UFP = upward facing port, DFP = downward facing port) Upward is the direction of the host, downward is the direction of a peripheral.

If the host has USB4 and supports PCIe tunnelling then it will support the entirety of Thunderbolt 3 functionality, either directly - if the USB4 host supports Thunderbolt 3, or indirectly - if the USB4 host does not support Thunderbolt 3 then a Thunderbolt 3 device can be connected to a USB4 dock or hub.

If PCIe tunnelling is not supported then I think DisplayPort tunnelling should continue to work even for Thunderbolt 3.

USB4 uses 10 or 20 Gbps per lane. Thunderbolt 3 uses 10.3125 or 20.625 Gbps per lane.
 
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Mainyehc

macrumors 6502a
Mar 14, 2004
631
176
Lisbon, Portugal
Hope the new ARM Macs have Thunderbolt.

They will, and all the comments claiming otherwise did not age well. Apple expressed their commitment to Thunderbolt (without specifying the generation, alas), on Apple Silicon Macs, on a press release.

There are other solutions that I personally would get rather than buying anything from Belkin :(.
belkin is trash

I’ve used a few products from that brand and all of the products I used didn’t last long or were terrible
Well, YMMV, I guess. I had a really nice TPU case for my 5th Gen iPod Touch, back when iPods still came with a clicky nub and the accompanying synthetic loops and TPU was a very rare material, and it was as good as the best current offerings for the iPhone.

As for electronics, I have a decent charger, which can only be faulted for its recessed ports (which meant I had to shave away parts of the enclosing lip to make my Otterbox cable's gargantuan USB-A plug fit) and their somewhat lax fit, as well as a veeeeery subtle electronic noise, which I can only perceive in complete silence. I also have a universal Qi charger on my car which is sturdy, works great (as a matter of fact, it charges much faster than my Micra's built-in USB-A port, which can't even charge my iPhone 11 faster than the battery drain caused by GPS on Maps) and has been holding up just fine.
 
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tadasZ

macrumors newbie
Aug 5, 2014
28
26
Vilnius
Those longer active cables only support USB 2.0 speeds. The Apple 2M “Pro” cable at $129 is the only one (in the world) that supports 40Gbps and USB 3.1 Gen 2, which is apparently the result of some sort of Apple witchcraft :eek:

i don't care about the cable price, be it 500$ for 1m, why can't they make their dongle with detachable 5cm cable and then sell 1m cable for 1k$ it would still be better
 
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